Tristan Thompson, Cleveland Cavaliers Agree on $80 Million Contract

Bryan Brandom
(Photo: Getty Images)

Cleveland Cavaliers forward and secret general manager LeBron James was satisfied on Wednesday, when his franchise grossly overpaid pal Tristan Thompson to stick around.

The power forward agreed to a five-year, $80 million contract only days after their other power forward, Kevin Love, agreed to a $110 million deal over the same span.

Thompson averaged 8.5 points, 8 rebounds, and 0.7 blocks while shooting 54.7 percent from the field in 2014-15—his first NBA season in which he shot over 50 percent from the field.

But the bloated contract makes a little more sense once one takes into consideration the fact that Thompson is managed by Klutch Sports, a company James partially owns. And while getting your friends paid (so you can get paid) is fine, doing so by paying a salary no other team would even remotely consider offering Thompson is a silly waste of cap space.

This is no knock on Thompson—a strong rebounder who's solid at defensively switching onto perimeter players late in the shot clock—but one of management. The Cavs' NBA Finals couterparts, the Golden State Warriors, just paid arguably its second-best player, Draymond Green, almost the same deal, at $85 million.

With LeBron often finding mismatches at the 4 spot, Thompson, meanwhile, isn't even the second-best power forward on his team.

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